I wanted to take a moment and share how much Roy and I enjoyed your presentation at the PERC meeting. I know that that group is a tough audience but you so eloquently presented the content with visuals, humor and just plain common sense. It was great and we both learned quite a lot. We can never get enough information about ourselves and our horses. There is always something else to learn and we sure did with your program. Thank you.
Also, I was listening to the group conversations after the meeting. The comments were all good ‘light-bulb’ moments. One lady shared her amazement relating to the airplane take off without a checklist. Another was scratching her head with the 7 steps prior. And one man shared his thoughts on the barefoot concept.
It is people like you who are willing to step out that make the most difference in our world. We appreciate your courage and determination to help us see differently and so we can make our own.
Thank you Jim,
Joyce and Roy
I wanted to tell you thanks for teaching me something. I was in the pen with Stoney (my biting horse) I had moved his food and he came after me – I got cornered in the shelter and he came at me with both hind feet – I was able to fend off the first volley and then he squished me into the corner – I remember you and the burro – hug that rear end and they cannot kick you – well – it certainly works. He tried his best to fold in half so he could bite me but couldn’t do that so he would let up and tried kicking again but I was snugged tight to that butt and he couldn’t kick me either – he did body slam me into the wall of the shelter but it gave (nice body dent in it now). I don’t panic in situations like this but sure broke down after I got out. Not sure if I have some cracked ribs but sure ache all over. But thanks to your teaching, I didn’t really get hurt. I am checking into sanctuary for this guy – I just cannot give him the attention he needs – he needs to be an only horse and have someone who loves him.
Thanks Jim, I am a long time Forco customer and use your product on all seven of my horses…I am a silver-haired granny and have practiced “gentle horsemanship” my entire life and I continue to read and learn and understand as much as I can about these wonderful creatures. I usually end up with horses that are from Champion bloodlines that have been badly treated… as in the old cowboy way of “making a horse mind” through force and intimidation. They usually arrive with issues that I know were created by some “idiot two-legged”. And so I spend as long as it takes to rebuild trust and calm. My horses are drop-dead gorgeous on the outside and jaw dropping awesome on the inside, NOW, that they have learned to trust and love and be respected by humans.
I purchased a lovely palomino gelding last year that was so mentally broken that my heart ached every time I walked him. He was angry, aggressive, and dangerous when he arrived. His feet were bleeding from a hurried up overdue trim and he was about 100lbs underweight. He reared and bit and struck out and was full of anger… a year later he is groomed, trimmed, saddled, etc. free in the pasture with other horses around. He is the best behaved and the most loyal horse on the ranch. His nobility has been restored and he is a joy to be around even for my novice handler hubby. He is once again a proud Peruvian Paso with dignity and calm. I am constantly asked by other horse folks who just don’t get it… “why haven’t you ridden that gelding yet?” When I try to explain that I had to “heal his heart first”… they simply couldn’t understand. He is now begging me to ride and is finally ready to relax, enjoy himself and be attentive to his mount. If I had tried to saddle and ride him when he first came in, it would have been disastrous for both of us.
I could tell stories about the horses I’ve rehabbed with severe trust issues that no one else could seem to MAKE mind. I don’t MAKE my horses mind. I teach them to understand and I try to understand them as well. I never hit, jerk, or mistreat any of my horses and yet they know when they are being corrected or admonished. A recent wild stallion ( a 34” miniature) that had been abused, used for a teaser for fighting dogs, thrown off a cliff and left for dead and was found belly up with coyotes chewing him to pieces. He was so starved, full of infection, and fear and anger, when he came, I thought I had bit off more than I could chew. He was too weak to stand and the first two weeks he slept on our deck on a dog bed so I could hold his head in my lap and hand feed him. When he recovered he was the real deal… stallion and all. So full of himself and ornery. 8 months later he is giving kisses, and every day he lets our Chihuahua “Eddie” ride on his back and we walk through the woods for hours with him being such a good fellow and never once loosing his canine passenger. NOW that is some horse! He has also been give a job and is trained to drive a cart and loves having a job. I had to heal his heart as well.
I have little patience for folks who buy horses, pretty them up, stall them, bring them out for shows or occasional rides and yank them around, yell at them, jerk on their noses, slap them with the lead rope.. all physical abuse in my book. They wouldn’t treat their children this way and yet they don’t understand that a horse is even MORE sensitive than most children. I know good people who think they know how to handle a horse and they believe that they are good owners… but i have to say, I am shocked and appalled at what I see these good people doing to their horses. You really should have to get a license that requires some schooling to even own one.
So Jim, I direct as many folks as I can to sites, such as your own, to educate themselves on the better way to have a relationship with a horse. The NATURAL way. The proof is in the pudding… when they see what I have accomplished with horses, no one else could deal with, by just treating them with respect and fairness they want to know how I do it… Sure, if one gets lippy and nips or pushes into my space, without permission, they get a pop on the chops or a backing up etc… but so rarely does this happen now that they know they will not be abused by me. Three of them are now playing my harmonica with me when I sit in their pasture. Muzzle right against the harmonica. The miniature likes to sing along and the others prefer the hammered dulcimer… go figure. I don’t play either well… but they don’t care.
Sorry to ramble… but folks like you are giving horse owners a better reputation by just being good to them. I thought I would thank you.